College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Iowa State NECA Chapter to compete in Electrical Contracting Innovation Challenge

Article below was written by Gretchen Mathiason, senior studying Civil Engineering. Edited by Kristine Perkins and Sierra Hoeger for clarity. 

The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) student chapter at Iowa State University is competing in the newly formed Electrical Contracting Innovation Challenge (ECIC), sponsored by NECA and ELECTRI International. Previously known as the Green Energy Challenge, this new change in competition now presents the team Cyclone Energy with a great opportunity to explore electrical design in depth for our community at Iowa State.  

For the first time, every team competing in ECIC are given the same construction documents of a four-story residential hall and are asked to implement this design on their respective campus in this year’s 2021 challenge. Cyclone Energy is calculating the power and electrical system, designing it by using BIM modeling and connecting with NECA and Iowa State members to help prepare a final proposal and technical analysis for the ECIC judges. In the upcoming fall semester, the top three finalists will travel to Nashville to present their proposal to NECA and ELECTRI International members. Each team will also propose a Net Zero Energy Building solution for this design.

Cyclone Energy believes in creating an enriching environment for Iowa State students throughout their academic career. Living in a University Residential Hall should promote productivity and should elevate the atmosphere for individuals. Therefore, Cyclone Energy is not only preparing a design that works, but will exceed expectations through innovative technologies.

Our team pictured from left to right is Gretchen Mathiason (CE Major, Sustainability Minor), Jenny Baker (Coach), Megan Lingafelter (ConE Major, Building Emphasis), Ryan Farrell (ConE Major, Electrical Emphasis), Ty Turner (ConE Major, Electrical Emphasis), Lucas Gilman (ConE Major, Electrical Emphasis), Beth Hartmann (Coach) and Josh Zeien (ConE Major, Electrical Emphasis).

The NECA Student Chapter at Iowa State and the Cyclone Energy team are sponsored by the Iowa Chapter NECA. Executive Director Angela Bowersox and her staff, working with Iowa NECA contractors, provide funding, scholarships, tours and guest speakers to the student organization.